It is one thing to know government officials are corrupt. Meeting the indecency face-to-face, however, is another story.
Mike Webert is a white collar criminal-in-training who paid his freshman dues to the power structure, attempting to legislate extra money and power to police forces near you.
The neoliberal hate machine known as “The Virginia Way” is far more gruesome than newspapers can tell – or are willing to tell – and this spring I was fortunate enough to learn firsthand just what a nightmare we live in. It was a good experience, but I had anxiety attacks on a near-daily basis.
What I could not articulate at the time is why I thought a “bad” experience was a good thing. Since I believe in myself and the content of my work, I was never so happy to have a story as I was disillusioned by the facts I reported. But I realized that even though I cherish the experience, I never came back from the capitol with a smile on my face, because what I saw there was truly horrific.
I never thought to myself, “That was nice,” or, “That went well.” Each day shocked or disturbed me in new ways. Politicians accept money directly from contractors, for example, to vote on initiatives that put those contractors to work rather than opening jobs up to bidding. And if the rally against Medicaid expansion wasn’t an attack on the working class, then neither was Jim Crow.
I often paced the floors wondering how to communicate basic legislation in the context of Virginia’s descent into hyperlibertarianism.
It was my job to report what I heard and saw, but many times I could not put even the most basic practices into words. The question of ‘why’ was always answered with money, but whose money? The real story felt like it was hidden beneath layers of intentionally misleading arguments, a deceptive smile, or the tone of voice rather than the empty words themselves.
As I continue to follow the money into my own arranged accident, I am still connecting evidence. But the best example of money in politics at the literal level, when dealing with public servants, is the story of a fellow CNS reporter once waited patiently outside of a delegate’s office.
He is an enthusiastic journalist willing to do whatever it takes to get an answer, so when a legislative aide told him his source might be available sometime between the morning and lunch, he decided to wait for that opportunity. With a pen and paper in his lap, he waited for hours.
Legislative aides are people in the capitol building who manage a legislator’s public image, send emails and schedule appointments. They are known to sometimes offer vague details about a politician’s whereabouts or activity. It is a game of their own, and aides control access to our elected officials.
He waited a long time. During his third hour of waiting for a chance to interview the representative, a small group of lobbyists appeared with flowers and gift baskets of fruit, cheeses and dried meats.
“We come bearing gifts!” the female announced, holding up a gift basket with a smile.
“Well, hello!” replied the aide, taking the flowers and displaying them on her desk. “Please, come on in!”
The group strode by as my reporter continued to wait. They disappeared into their mutual representative’s office and closed the door.
If ever a politician was honest, it was a notoriously hateful Manassas Tea Party Republican named Bob Marshall who said Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s executive order – to limit the amount of gifts politicians may legally receive – pushes corruption underground. They still accept blood money; they just don’t publish it on their website.
What nobody will say, however, is why publishing gifts in any amount does little more than add insult to injury upon our political system: when you can purchase a public policy vote, and list the going rate.
“Corporations have money on both sides of the ball. If you still think it’s an issue of liberals vs. conservatives, then you still believe in Santa Claus.” – Bill Burr
A mob of civil rights activists could change the way a bill becomes law Friday by repetitively chanting slogans.
If enough protesters chant “Nobama,” a key piece of legislation is likely to bypass Congressional oversight to become the first law in American history to be introduced by mob rule.
The Washington Bull Party will combine hateful Tea Party slogans with stubborn resolve to collapse the free market and shut down American ports, Bull Party Leader Jamie Jo Corne said in a YouTube video.
“I’m going to Washington, and I’m going to fuckin’ throw my sign in their FACE,” Corne said. “I want them fuckin’ ports closed down. You wanna hurt ‘em? Go for their god damn jugular. Don’t bitch kick ‘em.”
Corne accused viewers of being “pussified non-Americans” and said they are just as bad as those illegal immigrants taking over the United States, raping citizens.
Also called the “American Spring,” event planners said the demonstration is going to be a real barn-burner. If laws change at the whim of mob rule, then America will take one giant leap toward a greater Democracy.
My time as a “real journalist”
I recently spent time as a news reporter covering Virginia state politics. Over the course of a series of anxiety attacks and a number of shattered worldviews, I learned that ideology is important to politics like OJ’s alibi helped his case. Sure, you can put out a hypothetical argument, but everybody knows it’s money that makes real shit happen.
Allow me to state the obvious: Virginia’s 1% has the fucking money.
How much money? Never enough, if you know where to look. Mitt Romney, who ran against Obama in 2012, just gave our disgraced former governor $10,000 to help him get out of that whole “selling political power” indictment he and his wife so unfortunately found themselves in.
How much money? So much that it looks like Virginia doesn’t need free federal assistance. The state and its ignorant voter set recently answered a poll saying “no thank you” to Medicaid expansion that would have insured 450,000 needy Virginians. The same Virginians who could use the money (no strings attached, mind you, none at all – the money was going to this purpose anyway), with their hands held out in that begging, “Oh God help me or I’m going to die” style, are literally saying no to it. Are we a stupid people? Maybe, but even stupid people have instincts. Virginians are actually saying no to the federal money because the ideological farce favors corporate power on a scale so staggering, so stupefying, that world religious leaders probably look at America and think to themselves, “Why the fuck didn’t we think of that?”
How much money? Too much to report on. I attempted to report where Governor Terry McAuliffe’s money came from in December, shortly before he took office. My editor, a respected college professor, must be a democrat because he edited out the parts where I reported who gave McAuliffe his money, and how his promises aligned with their business models, and sent it to publication without my consent. He told me later he took it out because “it sounded forced.”
Why is that a problem? We journalists are taught to risk our freedom and risk our lives to report as much of the power politics minutia as we possibly can. Hacks report what a politician says to his opponents. Quality journalists report what a politician says, and where his money comes from, in a practice collectively known as “follow the money.” Nixon was toppled because two journalists successfully followed the money. Corrupt Bob McDonnell and his bottom-feeding wife might go to jail because people followed the money. And now I have attempted to follow the money.
Running The Internet Chronicle, combined with a practice of hounding powerful white men, has gotten me an incessantly clicking cellphone camera (thanks, Angry Birds), publication in over 20 Virginia newspapers in the last quarter, and some kind of awesome real-world resume-topping bullshit like I even give a fuck, like that’s even impressive, like it’s gonna get me a job in a decayed industry – like I’m some kind of briefcase-carrying, cigar-smoking, brandy-drinking, bottom-feeding, ladder-climbing young professional product of television: “Just Shoot Me!” and I’m going to make jokes with my boss about who got food for the office last time, and ‘this damn printer, again!’ Those interactions as you and I know are obviously going to be relegated to, “Holy shit, did you see the size of that rat?” and “You think we can afford to keep the paper running after Sears pulls out advertising?”
See, it’s money. Money keeps it moving. I asked a Republican delegate who introduced whistleblower protection laws if Snowden, too, is a patriot in the same way the local man was who the legislation is aimed at. “Not even the same ballgame,” he replied. And if you think Republicans are “worse” than Democrats for taking money like they do, then just take a look at this website.
If you dig in deep enough, you’ll find the same companies padding the pockets of every single motherfucking politician – democrat or republican (since those are our only two choices, what a democracy!) who touches their work. A construction company wants the city bid on an upcoming project? Well, guess who donated to the chairs of every planning committee, subcommittee and appropriations committee the project’s legislation passed through! No, the real question should be, who DIDN’T receive money to lie to you? To pretend to be ideologically motivated, instead of financially motivated? Who didn’t shake your hand, and lie to your face at a bar or some fucking ribbon cutting ceremony, when he was wearing plaid and kissing your faggoty baby, telling you how he’s gonna remember your name and take your concerns to Washington?
There’s not a living Virginia politician who doesn’t exchange political power for money. That’s why they want the job. You get rich as fuck doing this, and you get all kinds of neat perks like the chance to ride in a fast car, and free boats and shit. Hell, there’s not even a politician who’s neither Republican nor Democrat. And if you’re worried about somebody pulling a Lee Harvey Oswald, don’t sweat it. We got guys watching those guys. The power structure is safe. It’s people like you and me who are not. Their phones don’t click. They behave. Our phones click. Our power is dubious. Think I’m wrong? Do your own research, and I’ll do mine, and let’s see what we come up with.
In the case of my editor, who deleted the most important part of my McAuliffe piece, he not only protected the old white dude power structure, he failed to remove any of the potential dangers that challenging that system presented me with. My phone still clicks. Because my first draft got traded around via public college email servers, my intentions are still there, on a permanent record, but not for the public to see. The truth is instead hidden in some government database used to build a profile of my political leanings and tendencies to try to agitate and challenge authority. And nobody even got to see the fucking reason why. If I disappear, they’ll assume it’s because I was failing as a journalist. They’ll know I was just reckless and weak. Couldn’t string any real, hard-hitting story out anyway. When he did, it was a one-off kind of thing.
Sometimes I wonder: Wouldn’t it be funny if we all put our money together and outspent a corporation in the 2016 elections? I mean, we would have to spend a lot of money, and that’s not all. We’d need to pay staffs of lobbyists to keep a stream of gift-baskets and incentives flowing into these men’s offices. We’d need real fucking spending power. Also, we’d need a We. We don’t have a We. We strategically divided. Your profile and mine, they just don’t align.
But wouldn’t it be funny? It’s only a thought. Anyway, I know I can’t afford it, and you can’t either. That’s the beauty of capitalism! Spending money on political campaigns is a constitutionally protected form of free speech.
How much freedom can YOU afford?
Recently awarded 14 additional drilling permits. But the Gulf will never be clean again.
Israel is attacking American universities with data shared to them by the National Security Agency, and “busy” professors are responsible for the degradation of Occupy Wall Street, author and journalist Chris Hedges said.
Hedges said while he and Dr. Cornel West were having dinner, the two of them lambasted lazy journalism professors and other intellectuals of being “too busy” to support free speech. During a speech to Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, Hedges revealed a sinister Jewish plot to undermine American efforts at free dialog.
[Teachers] develop a secret respect for television media; a self-reinforced trust of the government.”
Documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden – who previously worked for Booz-Allen Hamilton – revealed the zealous scrutiny of private American citizens’ information provided to Israel by the NSA. Experts have pointed out Israeli intelligence agencies are beginning to target intellectuals who question the two nations’ militant right-wing confederacy.
Internet Chronicle anthropologist and Chief Executive of Economic Research Adviser Dr. Angstrom H. Troubadour said American university professors recuse themselves from forming a strong opinion because of a combination of factors.
“The omniscient gaze of the NSA and Israel are one reason you don’t want to be caught planning a demonstration against your government,” Troubadour said. “Fear of losing their jobs. Should they become impartial and dare to question Obama’s commitment to transparency, why, a teacher could disappear for that. So they develop a secret respect for television media; a self-reinforced trust of the government.”
Jeff Norment loves heroin.
RICHMOND, Va. – As state and local police bark outrage into TV cameras about ‘drug abuse’ and ‘urban decay’, lamenting spikes in violent crime, one often-overlooked piece of the picture in the war on drugs is the people actually using drugs.
To people like 27-year-old Jeff Norment, the heroin coming down I-75 from Detroit is “a God-send.” Norment says heroin has improved his life considerably, although his point of view is often brushed aside in favor of order and public safety.
“I was eating 20 and 40 pills a day, you name it, I was doing it,” Norment said, looking real cool. “But it was hell on my liver. But now that I’m on heroin – I’m in Heaven!”
Norment argued that the Richmond media – TV news in particular – does not represent all sides of the story, with a tendency to favor police and marginalize victims.
“Typical TV news story: we went to the Richmond police. We went to the state police,” Norment said. “But they didn’t come a-callin’ for old Jeff, saying, ‘Jeff how you liking them drugs?’ Now how are you gonna call that objective journalism and tell me I’m the bad guy?”
Norment argued that his voice is the missing piece of the story of a so-called ‘heroin epidemic’ in Richmond.
“I smoke crack on the reg. I snort dust on the reg. I shoot heroin on the reg, and you don’t see me committing no crimes. I just like me the rush, is all. And I like to lay here on this sofa playing PlayStation.”
Norment, who lives near the Grace Street Police Station, said police knock on his door almost every day – sometimes looking for suspects – sometimes just to break his balls.
“I know it ain’t good for me,” Norment said, rolling his eyes. “They’re always telling me that.”
Norment said if it weren’t for the police, he would have fewer problems.
“Thanks to heroin,” Norment said, “I’ve dodged a few bullets, both figuratively and literally. Shit, heroin even helps me escape the crushing reality of using heroin.”
28-year-old VCU alum Stephen Ascot says heroin affords him a certain lifestyle. The only difference, Ascot said, is that he is not on heroin.
“My weed dealer across the street gets me what I need, but he doesn’t give me heroin,” Ascot said. “I just know he’s going to be there, because he is on heroin.”
Richmond Police Captain Mike Ebert said drugs might feel good now, but addicts will “be pretty sore” about the crackdown on horse pouring in from Detroit.
“It’s easy to get addicted to the stuff, you just put it in your arm,” Ebert said. “But they’re going to be pretty sore about it when there ain’t no more heroin left for sale on the streets, after they do it all up.”
Ebert said his department is working with state police to set up checkpoints along the I-75 corridor to catch heroin traffickers coming down from the Motor City.
“Of course, the stops are designed to appear random,” he said. “But they’re not. We’ll know who to stop.”
This news is brought to you graciously by Lebal Drocer Pharmaceuticals.
Virginians are a-buzz over this shocking news!
Prisons used electric chairs when pictures looked like this.
RICHMOND, Va. — The atmosphere is electric at the Virginia General Assembly, where legislators are charged up and ready to take a vote on the controversial “back-up execution” method. Political analysts have said State Representative and Freedom Enthusiast M. “The Patriot” Webert is hurrying to amend the bill to what he says is “a more aggressive state.”
The bill would establish “shocking to death by electric chair” as the default, primary execution method if drugs for lethal injection are not readily available because fucking Steven forgot to call the dealer.
“And what if the power goes out, what then?” a member of Webert’s staff stated in an email. “Are we supposed to just wait around until it comes back on? No. These rapers, chinks, and swampy’s need to go, and they need to go quickly. The subtext of the bill includes electrocution by car battery.”
Chronicle.su Resident Physician Dr. Angstrom H. Troubadour said capital punishment is important work that should not be entrusted to the free market.
“We don’t have all fuckin day. What, we gotta wait and see if the needles work, too?” Troubadour mused. “No time for that – here in Virginia, us boys will go straight to execution, the American way. That’s why they call it a Commonwealth.”
Troubadour, who is also a historian, said that although there was no death penalty before 1976, “it was still better to die back then.”
“And what we did back then” he said, “was torture them with true stories about Richard Nixon.”
Webert’s amendment appeals for five different back-up methods in case of a drug shortage. The first is electrocution. But in case of any electrical problems, the next outmoded four are: impalement; premature burial; suffocation in ash; and hanged, drawn, and quartered.
If Webert’s bill goes through, GOP leadership said they will ask Governor McAuliffe to issue an executive order televising state executions at pay-per-view premium prices.
The governor’s office was not available for comment at the time of this story. As to whether the governor would sign off or veto the bill, he still has not said.
But Webert has been assured that “If Terry is anything like me, he’ll be in the front row with a bag of popcorn. Hell, the first round’ll be on me!”
Hacker collective Anonymous takes credit for decimating the Internet Chronicles servers or something.
INTERNET — The Internet Chronicle was under siege Sunday evening, as packets flooded in from across the globe, shutting down the site temporarily. This tactic is widely known and used by Anonymous, a loose-knit offshoot of Anonymous hacker group known as Anonymous, as an act of censorship to protest censorship and other such social injustices. Sure enough, moments after the attack began, the Anonymous flagship account @YourAnonNews took credit for the attack, issuing an ominous “Mango Down,” which is a technique pioneered by Anonymous subset troll organization the “Rustle League.” The @YourAnonNews attack was rumored to be spearheaded by Anonymous Commander “xyz” and collaborator “xnite.”
Staff writers were initially taken aback by this ugly turn of events, as we’ve always had a really great relationship with Anonymous and all of its offshoot groups. However, spiritual peace in our office was soon attained once resident Internet anthropologist Dr. Angstrom H. Troubador relished in the idea that we were actually a target of a “virtual sit-in.”
At a board meeting this morning, Dr. Troubador expressed with great exuberance how this pseudoevent was actually a blessing in disguise, as it cemented the Internet Chronicle forever in the annals of Internet history as a target of Anonymous. During his two hour long slide-show, Dr. Troubador referenced respected Internet anthropologists Gabriella Coleman and Peter Ludlow, the former actually being the current leader of Anonymous, and blamed Chronicle writers for making fun of Christ-like martyr and ex-leader of Anonymous, Barrett Brown, citing this as the cause for the attack.
“You idiots think you can just run around writing about whatever you want and get away with it? This isn’t the Internet of yesterday, my friends, this is an Internet ruled by the power of Anonymous and it’s about time we fucking recognized it.” Troubador said, poetically taking a drag from his spliff.
Upon leaving the meeting, all staff had to purchase Coleman’s book “Coding Freedom” to be read immediately and were forced to sign an agreement form that said we would pre-order her upcoming book on the hegemonic Internet force that is Anonymous.
INTERNET — Everything you thought you knew about hacking is bullshit.
After years of living underground, in refuge from the whitehat warlords, blackhat hackers will finally be eliminated in what is being dubbed the “Blackhat Holocaust.” What was once a rich and vibrant scene has been co-opted by the far right-left corporatarians, meaning dollar bills, fellas. Your hats are meaningless in the eyes of governments and corporations alike. All of your ideas, inventions, theories, exploits are being freely(at a cost) distributed amongst the wealthy to piss in the collective pool with.
The NSA are the biggest blackhats, man.
Your OPSEC is futile. You mull over the thousands of possibilities for event(x) out loud on twitter, while the blackhats laugh in the background. Such ugly schadenfreude; but their time has come.
The Internet Chronicles Chief Technology Officer and avid Biella Coleman fan, Dr. Angstrom H. Troubador elaborates: “Blackhats aren’t Anonymous, they aren’t carders, script kiddies, packeteers or those owning Linode for fun. Nay, they are something far more villainous.”
For about 15 years now, people touted whitehats as the enemy of the hacking community at large, but the real harbinger of destruction was the peddling of a deluded belief that being a blackhat meant you could still work for the government, you could still be a corporate lackey, you’d have to sell your soul, but you could still write your exploits… though you’d have to sell those too. Everyone needs money though, right? We understand.
Is there a way to overthrow the omnipresent blackhat hegemony? Absolutely! You must learn the ways of the blackhat, become a blackhat hacker, immerse yourself in all things blackhat. Write as many exploits as possible. You will be challenged though, oh you will be challenged. This task is not for the faint at heart or wallet. With your exploits comes the potential for sale to nation-state actors that will use your own tools against you, your friends and loved ones. You will be lured in by unimaginable riches, the wealth of a thousand kingdoms and oh the power, the mother fucking power! However grandiose it all may seem, don’t fuck your fellow hackers and citizens in the ass. Just don’t fucking do it.
The blackhats will come to you in many forms. It will happen this way: you will be coding… maybe the last sunny day of fall and an encrypted message will be sent to you from someone you know, perhaps even trust, and they will offer a smile, a becoming smile, but they will leave open the door to becoming a true blackhat and offer to give you a lift…
For this day: release your exploits, tools, techniques, everything you’ve ever learned! Destroy all of your 0day via disclosure or distribute them amongst the poor and impoverished! Take the power you collected through your quest for great knowledge and destroy it in one fell swoop.
Cum on them before they cum on you.
And then create something beautiful.
I suppose it doesn’t matter though, guys and dolls, because there’s a war going on and this war is prefixed with “cyber,” fellas. Buyin’ in, sellin’ out.
John Kerry showed the telltale signs of retardation Friday.
Secretary of State John Kerry has descended into what experts are calling advanced mental retardation. As the increasingly complex situation in Syria continues to unfold, the former Senator appears “disheveled and dumb.”
“I’m not saying there’s any correlation,” explained The Internet Chronicle’s Chief Political Analyst Dr. Angstrom H. Troubadour, “but if you just look at his drooping, uneven eyes, and listen to the shit he says, he’s obviously totally retarded.”
John Kerry told Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Friday to disclose his data on chemical weapons and is arranging a plan with Russia to dispose of Assad’s chemical weapons.
“Kerry’s pitiful retardation prevents him from acknowledging the likelihood of false flag gas attacks as a measure of ousting Syria’s leadership. Because it’s either that, or he wants to help Al-Qaeda, and our government wouldn’t seriously prop up the group responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks, right?”
In other news: Italian MP says 9/11 was an inside job
“I told you so”
INTERNET – According to a new study, an overwhelming majority of online peace activists just want President Obama to get on with bombing Syria.
The study, conducted by the non-partisan Pew Research Center, found that 91% of internet users who identify as peace activists are increasingly impatient to condemn civilian casualties of the expected U.S. bombing campaign. All of the remaining 9% agreed that although they would rather the bombings not go ahead, they were looking forward to saying “I told you so” if the U.S. accidentally strikes a school or hospital.
“We all know Obama is going to order these strikes no matter what,” said 22 year old Tyson Jaager, an unemployed retail assistant from Ohio who runs an anti-war Tumblr account. “I’m going to make side-by-side composite photos of dead children from the alleged chemical weapon attacks and dead children from U.S. strikes. I’m just waiting for the bombs to start falling now.”
21 year old Amy Brighton, a London barista and active Guardian commenter, agreed: “I’ve written a damning petition to take back Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize. I’m ready to post it to Change.org. I just kind of feel like I need to wait for him to actually order the strikes. God, this is taking forever.”